New HIV strain leads Viacom to rework its "Know HIV/AIDS" campaign
February 17 2005 12:00 AM ET
Officials behind media giant Viacom's "Know HIV/AIDS" educational campaign are considering changes to the HIV prevention messages included in the campaign due to the discovery of a highly drug-resistant strain of HIV reported last week in a New York City man, The Wall Street Journal reports. The Viacom campaign, which is supported by the Kaiser Family Foundation, includes public service announcements, television and radio programming, and free print and online content on the media company's 185 Infinity Broadcasting radio stations, outdoor advertising venues, and television networks, including CBS, UPN, MTV, BET, VH1, Showtime, Comedy Central, and others.
Kaiser's Tina Hoff says she plans to meet with Viacom officials to discuss the inclusion of messages in the "Know HIV/AIDS" campaign about the risks of drug-resistant HIV to young people. "News like this has the potential to fuel a lot of hysteria and fear," Hoff told the Journal. "We want to make sure we're providing accurate messages." Viacom senior vice president of corporate relations Carl Folta says the company is eager to adjust its HIV educational messages to attain the broadest possible impact among at-risk young people. "We're going to sit down and gather our creative forces to help in the education," he told the Journal.